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California Governor Vetoes “Fake News” Bill

Published: September 30, 2018
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Reprinted with permission from TheNewAmerican.com.

California Governor Jerry Brown (shown) has vetoed legislation that would have created a state advisory group to study the dissemination of “fake news” on the Internet, deeming such a group “not necessary.”

On September 20, Brown, a Democrat, vetoed the bill, which was authored by state Senator Richard Pan, also a Democrat, and passed the California Assembly and Senate in late August. “This bill directs the Attorney General to establish an advisory group to study the problem of the spread of false information through Internet-based social media platforms,” Brown wrote to the Senate. “As evidenced by the numerous studies by academic and policy groups on the spread of false information, the creation of a statutory advisory group to examine this issue is not necessary.”

The bill’s demands went well beyond mere studies of “fake news,” reported Sacramento’s KOVR:

The bill would have required the California Attorney General to create the advisory committee by April 1, 2019. It would have had to consist of at least one person from the Department of Justice, representatives from social media providers, civil liberties advocates, and First Amendment scholars.

The Assembly and Senate-passed bill required the advisory group to study how false information is spread online, come up with a plan for social media platforms to fix the problem, and develop criteria establishing what is “fake news” versus what is inflammatory or one-sided

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